On adding ammonia & beneficial bacteria to a new pond

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Plants are like the water...sooner you added them the sooner everything settles down. I don't know what issue there would be fertilizing them as long as just fertilizer is used. I add a lot of fertilizer to plants like Canna and most plants. Most marginal type plants don't do very well without added fertilizer.
 
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Marginal is a general term for plants that grow around the edge of a body of water, the margins. Their roots are in soil. They can grow on the bank on "dry" land, but can also grow in fairly sallow water. The other 2 classes are submersibles and floaters. Submersibles have roots in soil but green part doesn't go above the surface. Floaters the roots are in the water and green part above the surface, so they float around. All the plants in these 3 classes act kind of the same, similar care.

Here's a weird one...here in Phoenix, desert, marginals are popular landscape plants.Surprised me, but makes sense. Many are adapted to handle lots of water (when sprinklers on) and storing water to get thru dry spells. Cool plants.
 

sissy

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Well glad you did I made some of those rocks .Hope you are doing good .Not to misdirect the post .
 

Meyer Jordan

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Plants are like the water...sooner you added them the sooner everything settles down. I don't know what issue there would be fertilizing them as long as just fertilizer is used. I add a lot of fertilizer to plants like Canna and most plants. Most marginal type plants don't do very well without added fertilizer.

Fertilizing plants before fish are added only increases the Nitrogen level in the water column placing an even greater demand on a yet to be cycled biofilter. This caveat applies mainly to new ponds that are undergoing "fishless" cycling. Fertilizing plants will only extend the cycling time required.
 
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In addition to what MitchM said there's at least one more interaction to note and that's algae. It doesn't really matter, but just for fun, algae will consume ammonia directly bypassing the nitrite/nitrogen deal. A pond doesn't need to be visibly green, there can be a lot of algae before visible. Cycling a water garden is almost never needed, the light fish load in these is handled fine. It's something done in high fish load systems. Bottom line is testing ammonia at the start tells you what's going on. It doesn't really matter in a water garden whether it's algae or bacteria consuming ammonia, but in virtually all water gardens algae is doing the heavy lifting.

Rain water normally is 0 KH so the water isn't buffered at all. That leads to PH being very unstable and readings being kind of meaningless. If you measure KH and add (if needed) to keep KH up you don't even have to test PH. Rain water coming down is generally very low, like in the low 5's in west US and under down to like 4.3 in the NE US. In thunderstorms it can get down to low 2's. This can have an effect in low/no buffered ponds. And of course the resulting PH from increasing KH can effect the ratio of toxic and non-toxic ammonia. Also, chemicals to dechlorinate water can result in meaningless ammonia test readings for most common test kits.

Bacteria in a bottle is very popular with stores and people. The better the company marketing the happier the people. It's a great placebo and helps many people lower their stress level. However, if you're part of the shrinking world of people interested in data you will find no hard evidence bacteria in a bottle has any effect other than add a bit of waste to the water. If you prefer a common sense approach you can add some ammonia to water, in a bucket or whatever, and be amazed how fast bacteria set up shop and consume it all. Ammonia converting bacteria is everywhere. As for exotic bacteria some companies elude to, well, back to placebo. For sure many people who pay $20-60 for a bottle of stuff do claim to "see" benefits. Most of these products seem to do no harm so if you feel the need, I'd say do ahead. It's just money.

If you have the time, for most water gardens, it's hard to beat filling your pond with water and just waiting a week or more to add fish. You get stable water pretty fast. But a testing ammonia and KH is good insurance.

Nice to see you back, Waterbug.

.
 
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LOL...I just decide not to use beneficial bacteria, and you post that link! Oh well, I have time to make up my mind...again! ;)

The product that Meyer Jordan mentioned is one of the good ones that place an expiry date on their product.
I've never used bacteria in a bottle, I've never felt a need to rush the process.
I did find it very interesting to learn about all the different products out there.
Up to you.;)
 
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Considering the cost of most of these beneficial bacteria products and the fact that the ones that might really somehow contain significant quantities of beneficial bacteria are bound to be quite expensive VS the fact that all the bacteria you need to start a good colony are already in your water, it seems like a complete waste of money to me.

Like bacteria, algae is also an essential part of ponds, and like bacteria it also coats almost everything in the pond and consumes ammonia, and yet nobody ever feels the need to inoculate their pond with bottled algae products, yet it manages to find it's way into every pond all on it's own. Why do you think that is?
 
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I expect that if you tried to inoculate a new pond with algae (after you added ammonia), you would have algae blooms, PH swings and delayed establishment of a proper nitrifying bacteria population.
I see algae as a safety valve for the aquatic environment, which consumes extra nutrients that are available because of an overloaded biofilter.
 
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I expect that if you tried to inoculate a new pond with algae (after you added ammonia), you would have algae blooms, PH swings and delayed establishment of a proper nitrifying bacteria population.
I see algae as a safety valve for the aquatic environment, which consumes extra nutrients that are available because of an overloaded biofilter.
The point was there is no need to inoculate the algae, it's there already (just like the bacteria). That's why algae blooms are so common in new ponds, even ones where no one has added ammonia or algae.
Algae and nitrifying bacteria both consume ammonia, but they do have a couple key differences, algae thrives in sunlight and won't grow at all in the absence of light, also algae requires very little oxygen. Nitifying bacteria on the other hand thrive in an oxygen rich environment, but grow just fine with zero sunlight. Really wana speed up the nitrification process? make sure you get lots of oxygenation in the water, especially in your bio-filter if you have one.I expect that would do more than adding redundant bacteria that is already present in the pond.
 
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Studies have shown that adding viable nitrifying bacteria will speed up completion of the nitrification cycle.
As hobbyists, I don't see the need, but as a curiosity there's nothing wrong with giving it a try. I would probably try some out just for the education aspect.
I can see where a business could find it beneficial to inoculate with viable bacteria. The quicker you get a pond up and running the sooner the job is completed.
At night, algae will consume oxygen.
I agree with ensuring as much oxygenation as possible is a good thing.
 

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